Genesis MMA Team had their first team outing together on Saturday 9th February 2013, at the ‘Berserker Brawl – Valhalla’ tournament, run by Reading based MMA gym ‘Gods of War’. This was an interclub, beginners tournament with 3 gyms taking part; Genesis, Gods of War, and Exile Gym from Southampton.
After a year of tuition in Jujitsu, Wrestling and Kickboxing, the Genesis MMA Team was formed at the start of 2013, with the aim of producing top level competitive MMA athletes. Our goal this year is to give our team as much experience as possible in the way of training sessions around the country, and building up amateur careers for the fighters before they turn semi pro or pro. Although this tournament was an interclub, each fighter had to make weight, the bout took place in the cage (grappling or MMA), with entrance music, a cheering crowd, the full deal.
We had 9 fighters taking part: Soroush Mahdavi, David Knight, Kirk Dixon, Ed Gamster, Kane Holloway and Julian Kerr were taking part in an open grappling tournament. Sam Balfour was in his first full MMA bout, with Leon Delafonte and Ashley Allen taking part in exhibition bouts (no possible winner). This team was supported by Wrestling Coach Chad Edwards, Senior Instructor Paul Busby, plus team mates Marley Lidster and Andrew Gibson there to cheer them on.
First up was the open grappling tournament, with all gyms having fighters enter. David ‘Smasher’ Knight was up first, and quickly overpowered his opponent throughout the 5 minute round to take victory for Genesis.
Soroush Mahdavi was up next into the cage. This was an incredibly hard working bout, with both fighters showing supreme fitness levels. Soroush took the win based on takedowns and agression.
Next up was Genesis Wrestling student Kirk Dixon, who had to work hard against a very fit opponent to also take the win. David, Soroush and Kirk went through to the next round.
Kane Holloway has been taking part in Genesis Kickboxing classes for years, but is new to MMA. He fought a hard 5 minute round against his Gods of War opponent who clearly had more experience. Kane went out on referee’s decision, but will be back next time!
Another Genesis Wrestling student was up next, Ed Gamester. Ed took the bout on last minute decision, so was slightly underprepared, but fully up for the challenge. Being so used to pinning people down (instead of going for submissions), Ed was easily overpowering his opponent however not scoring too many points. Ed was beaten by a rear choke late into the 5 minute round.
Julian Kerr was up next for Genesis in the cage. Julian has only had a few months training so this was to be a real test for him. Immediately he went in for the kill, securing a guillotine choke on his oppoent and winning by submission in 30 seconds, the fastest win of the day!
1st, 2nd and 3rd place to Genesis MMA!
Grappling – 2nd ROUND:
David ‘Smasher’ Knight was back up again in the second round. David weighed in as the heaviest competitior of the day, and was up against the lightest, with a 30kg weight difference! His lighter Gods of War based opponent piled on the pressure at the start of the round, however David kept his cool and won by an armlock submission (keylock) after 90seconds.
Two Genesis fighters had to battle it out next, with Soroush Mahdavi up against Julian Kerr. Julian gave it 110% however the experience of Soroush showed through, winning by points decision.
Kirk Dixon was now up against another Gods of War fighter, who had beaten Kane Holloway earlier. Kirk showed complete skill, dominating the fight throughout to take a clear referee’s decision.
Grappling – FINALS:
This set up a 3 way final between David Knight, Soroush Mahdavi and Kirk Dixon. They all had to compete against eachother in a round robin system. David was up against Soroush first, and showed why we named him ‘Smasher’! Soroush, as hard working as ever couldn’t beat the power and strength of David. Kirk was next to face David (who decided he didn’t even want to rest), David took the win with a rear naked choke 3 minutes in. David was the winner! Soroush and Kirk battled it out for third, with Soroush’s experience and workrate winning by points decision.
Genesis MMA Team took FIRST, SECOND and THIRD places in the open grappling tournament! Well done guys!
Next up were the MMA bouts. First up for Genesis was Leon ‘Handsome’ Delafonte. This was an exhibition bout (no possible winner) as no strikes to the head were allowed. Despite the lack of headshots, this was probably the hardest hitting, most intense fight of the day. Leon remained calm under the pressure, and worked brilliantly on his slightly superior ground game, to stay on top of his opponent through 3x 3minute rounds. A very hard hitting fight! No winner was possible.
Next up was Ashley ‘Big Marlow’ Allen against a hugely experienced Gods of War instructor. This was a demonstration bout, giving Ashley huge experience of such an event. Ashleys vastly more experienced opponent gave Ashley a great experience and we are very greatful to him for doing so. Ashley completed all 3x 3 minute rounds.
Last up was Sam ‘Animal’ Balfour against Gods of War, 6foot 4inch, Judo Blackbelt Kyle Grady. This was under MMA rules, allowing head contact. With high hopes on him, Sam started brilliantly with greatly timed punches and kicks. Unable to compete with Sam at standing up, Kyle forced the clinch and managed a take down, both fighters ending up evenly on the floor. A quick skirmish later and Sam was against the cage wall, Kyle won with a Kimura (arm lock). This competition was intended only as a great learning experience, and an inconsolable ‘Animal’ will be back for more very soon!
So ended the first day out for the Genesis MMA Team. Our next outings include training at a BJJ gym in London on 23rd February, followed by an MMA squad training on 23rd March at Gods of War in Reading. We are setting up matches for the next interclub competition in early July, and could possibly be entering fighters for shows before that. Genesis MMA Fighters Corey Cain, Phil Collins, Matthew Holland and Matthew Ford are all competing in TKMMA 2, ‘Blood and Iron’ on Saturday March 2nd at Handy Cross Sports Centre, for what is set to be on of the biggest events of the year. Tickets are SOLD OUT, info here:
Kyle Grady Vs Sam ‘Animal’ Balfour